It’s been a while since I’ve posted a blog…I have several started but lately getting any project completed takes some time and patience. I am now the full-time nanny for my 17-month old granddaughter; the transition from a window office overlooking Michigan Avenue in Chicago to farm house in Prairie Du Sac with a lovely view of the Baraboo bluffs and our own chicken coop is the subject of one of those unfinished blogs. I’ll get it done soon. These days my “to-do” list is far longer than my “done” list but I’ve re-learned that sometimes life’s sweetest moments are those that take us by surprise, those that are never on a to-do list.
I was making sweet potato pie popsicles yesterday, something I do nearly everyday because Maggie absolutely loves them. As I
opened the freezer door to check on the pops, her attention was drawn to the ice cubes. She reached in a grabbed a cube then dropped it because it was so cold. As it slid across the kitchen floor I thought, “I better get that away from her” but then I noticed she grabbed the icy thing and had the cutest quizzical look on her face. She hadn’t really paid much attention to ice before (had she ever held an ice cube?) and I could see she was surprised at the cold on her hands. What was this thing that made her hand feel funny?
I stopped what I was doing and sat on the floor with her. We took turns putting the chilly cube against our cheeks as I said “cold” and shivered hoping she would get that it meant opposite of hot which she already understands. Then that magical block began to drip … and drip … and drip. She was mesmerized by the droplets trying to figure out where they were coming from as she studied the whole process with such intensity. Tiny water droplets would roll off her fingers onto the floor then she’d wait for the next ones to form. She squeezed the cube harder in hopes of making more drops (it worked!) She giggled as she offered a lick to the dog who really wanted to just chomp the thing and be done with it.
Together we watched a single cube of ice slowly transform itself before our eyes…from frozen chunk that was hard to hold on to to nothing but a puddle of water. With empty hands she turned her face to me as if to say “where’d it go?” “All gone,” I explained as we wiped up the wet floor. She smiled her biggest smile and nodded yes.
That was the best 20 minutes I’ve spent in a long time and trust me, it wasn’t on my to-do list.
Sweet Potato Pie Popsicles
Yield depends on the size of your popsicle molds. I used Munchkin molds that are about 1/2 ounce each and I got 12 mini-popsicles, about two days’ worth!
1 sweet potato, baked until tender
1/4 cup Coconut milk, plus a bit more if needed
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon dark chocolate cocoa powder
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt (I used plain and just add a pinch of honey; read the labels, some flavored yogurts are loaded with sugar!!)
In a blender, add the sweet potatoes (reserve 2 tablespoons of the potatoes for the chocolate layer), milk and cinnamon until smooth. Add 2 tablespoons of the maple syrup and blend again. The potato mixture should be the consistency of thick applesauce. If it’s too thick, add more milk.
Stir together the reserved sweet potato, cocoa and 1/2 tablespoon of maple syrup. If too thick, add a teaspoon of coconut milk.
In the molds, spoon a bit of Greek yogurt just to fill bottom of mold. Top with potato mixture being careful not to mix the two layers together but filling 3/4 of the mold. Freeze for 15 minutes. Add chocolate layer and freeze several hours.
These aren’t just baby pops either … big kids and adults will enjoy them too!